Blakley’s commercial career began at the age of nine when he dug up stones from his neighbors’ backyards and then sold them to their original owners. In high school, he was suspended from running a homework support network and, at the age of 14, he had his own social media agency. Today, Blakley runs YouthLogic, a youth marketing agency he founded at the age of 15. With customers such as Sprint, HootSuite and NPD Group, his company billed $500,000 last year and project revenues of $800,000 in 2018.
After watching a TEDx chat from Cameron Herold, former COO of 1-800-Got-Junk, he gave himself a new email (and another six emails after no reply), which led to Herold coordinating the young entrepreneur.
Blakley’s partners and mentors today include Jay Abraham, Joe Polish, Daymond John, and Brian Solis. Shark Tank Guru Daymond John and Blakley are currently working on several projects.
The Generation Gap: Blakley is helping to connect brands to Generation Z, which is known to have been born in 1996 and will represent 40% of all consumers by 2020. “My friends and I were playing basketball one day outdoors, and when we took a break, I noticed that everyone was going super fast on their phones. They were on their Facebook feeds, ordering pizzas, and going to their mother’s house at the same time. They all have this digital intuition, and it goes faster.”
Wise advice: Blakley didn’t waste much time looking for impressive corporate mentors, using emails to get in the door with Mark Cuban of Shark Tank and Cameron Herold, a famous corporate consultant. “I talk to Cameron every day. He was super generous and opened my eyes to many things. I’ve been very comfortable with CEOs for a long time.
Attention Please: Although diagnosed with Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder and Forms of Dyslexia, Blakley has flourished and now has offices in Cleveland and New York City. “I think it’s positive. I wouldn’t be able to do what I do if I didn’t have ADD. This is where creativity and self-awareness come from.
Between business meetings, Blakley loves to channel his LeBron James indoors and make a few baskets. “I play basketball every day. I need to be active. Basketball is a kind of escape for me, and it’s obviously so much fun.”
When Blakley was starting out, he took the word R&D (tear off and replicate) way too far. He would repeat what he heard experts say and expect clients had not heard it anywhere before.
An excellent entrepreneur also knows when to pivot and iterate over their idea, and that is precisely what Blakley did. “But after doing so for a while, I started coming up with my own original ideas, theories, and thoughts. And this is when I began to see my business and personal brand burst.”
The best people he has met in the industry come to work with a mindset where they are always willing to learn. These are the kind of people that will make it huge in their respective fields. This won’t be because of their own thought process, but due to their willingness to follow their customer’s thought process and channel their energies accordingly.